We've sailed around Tortola many times and know a number of her bays, but other than brief excursions ashore we have never really been inland on the island. Today we rented a car to provide the remedy.
Anchored in Trellis Bay it was super easy to walk across to the Beef Island airport and pick up a car at the east end of the island. With local intel from Paul, we immediately turned north for stunning views over Monkey Point and White Bay before continuing down to Josiah's Bay.
Being a Saturday and a local team surfing event at this particular beach we'd stumbled upon some great entertainment. All ages seemed to be participating and while I know nothing about surfing it appeared that there were some pretty good runs out there, and some pretty good wipe outs as well. The waves were probably about 5-6' tall at their largest and we were able to stand on the point by the bay for a good vantage point. I was having a great time playing around with the settings on my camera and managed to get some fun sequences.
The rain forest at the top of the mountain was lush and humid with transition into a mahogany forest on the north slope. A lookout has been built a little below the summit with views of the Channel Islands and Nanny Cay, although it was quite hazy so it was difficult to see beyond Tortola itself. The very summit was marked by a survey point of concrete. Returning to the parking lot we stopped for lunch which was ho-hum but quite a good Painkiller to wash it down.
We had plans for finding dinner in the Hodges Bay area but the restaurant we were looking for had closed so we decided to head back to Mowzer and perhaps dinner in Trellis Bay. After returning the car at the airport and wandering across the road to the bay, we settled onto the boat, couldn't make up our minds for dinner and opted for simple fare aboard.
Our final impression of Tortola: would rent a more powerful car next time especially if we had more people (I really thought we weren't going to make it up some of those hills), would eat dinner at West End at Fish 'n Lime, the island is a nice mix of local life and tourism - they've balanced it well, traffic and life on the island is not near as hectic as on St. Thomas with a slightly newer, cleaner feel. All in all we thoroughly enjoyed the day.